Nokia, China Mobile collaborate on 5G and AI

10 Jul 2018

Nokia and China Mobile have signed an agreement to investigate the potential of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to optimize future networks and enable the delivery of new edge cloud and 5G services.

As part of the collaboration, the duo will jointly establish a laboratory in Hangzhou, China to develop a demo system to verify technology use cases using Nokia 5G Future X architecture. China Mobile will meanwhile lead the research in terms of scenario selection, requirements confirmation, open API standardization and solution definition.

Nokia and China Mobile will also work together to research applications for AI and machine learning, aiming to ensure any changes in demand are predicted and network resources are automatically allocated to meet all service demands with consistent high quality and reliability.

The collaboration is intended to foster an open RAN and 5G ecosystem as Nokia and China Mobile work with third parties to leverage AI and machine learning and optimize networks for the delivery of services such as cloud virtual reality gaming.

The companies' research will leverage Nokia AirScale Cloud RAN, AirFrame OpenRack, open edge server and ReefShark chipsets, as well as Nokia-developed AI middleware to access embedded intelligence.

Nokia and China Mobile will also conduct technology field trials and demonstrations.

China Mobile Research Institute (CMRI) deputy general manager Yuhong Huang said the mobile giant has been paying attention to the application of artificial intelligence for a long time, and is working to build an open and collaborative 5G+AI ecosystem.

“With the signing of this MoU, we are pleased to initiate the collaboration on the research of big data and machine learning technologies applying to 5G RAN network. [We will also] make joint effort in the O-RAN alliance which was kicked off recently to enhance the intelligence of 5G networks, reduce the complexity, and explore the new capabilities of the network," Huang said.

Teaming with Tencent to explore 5G initiatives in China

In a separate announcement, Nokia said it has struck a partnership with Chinese internet giant Tencent to jointly conduct R&D work to explore the potential of 5G that “will benefits billions of internet users in China.”

The two companies will establish a joint lab in Shenzhen that provides an end-to-end 5G test environment leveraging 5G technologies, products and solutions, including centralized and decentralized split architecture using Nokia Airscale Radio Access Network, 5G Core, MEC framework and third party devices. Nokia and Tencent will conduct verification on service key performance indicators and develop new 5G and IoT use cases.

Nokia and Tencent will also leverage the AI and automation management capabilities enabled by 5G to promote international standards, and to foster an open-source ecosystem that will expand the development of new services.

The pair will also be conducting 5G applications research by making use of technologies like edge computing, which will be of great advantage for a number of vertical markets, including transportation, finance, energy, intelligent manufacturing and entertainment.

This will potentially open up the widespread introduction of applications such as cellular vehicle-to-everything (C-V2X) and enhance the delivery of services such as cloud-based gaming and entertainment, the Finnish vendor said.

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